West Wickham pavement widening

Consultation has concluded

Last year we temporarily widened pavements on West Wickham High Street. In June 2021 we ran a discussion with local people, asking if we should keep the widened pavements, amend them using a different material, or to remove them.

Following the feedback we received, and reviewing our own monitoring of how much people are using then, we have decided to remove the blue barriers and return the road to how it was before the pandemic. We believe there is enough space for pedestrians to safely social distance on the existing pavement. Removing the temporary measures will allow us to reinstate

Last year we temporarily widened pavements on West Wickham High Street. In June 2021 we ran a discussion with local people, asking if we should keep the widened pavements, amend them using a different material, or to remove them.

Following the feedback we received, and reviewing our own monitoring of how much people are using then, we have decided to remove the blue barriers and return the road to how it was before the pandemic. We believe there is enough space for pedestrians to safely social distance on the existing pavement. Removing the temporary measures will allow us to reinstate parking and loading bays that were removed to make way for the scheme.

We will remove the blue barriers week commencing 5 July.

Tell us if we should keep, amend or remove the pavement widening in West Wickham

We need to decide what to do with the pavement widening scheme on West Wickham High Street. We can either keep, amend or remove it.  Please tell us what you think we should do.

You may want to consider telling us:

  • If you would like us to keep, amend or remove the scheme
  • What material or design you might think we should use
  • Your experiences of using the extended pavements

If you are unable to use this tool you can also let us know your views by:

  • Emailing us at haveyoursay@tfl.gov.uk
  • Writing to us at FREEPOST TFL HAVE YOUR SAY
  • Calling our contact centre on 0343 222 1234

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CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

I am a resident of West Wickham and value the High Street as my local shopping centre. The temporary barriers should be removed - all unnecessary obstructions on the road and pavement are a hazard to cyclists, motorists and pedestrians. The residents association have made their members aware of the issue and I agree with them over the removal. The local elected representatives, the councillors, also regard any widening of the pavement , and narrowing of the road a waste of money. Please ensure that local option is taken into account and do not impose any unwanted changes on our high street.

wwresident 4 months ago

We object to this becoming permanent. It is not necessary and a waste of tax-payers' money.. It also slows the traffic down in a very busy street causing pollution which must be avoided

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

The widening of the pavements does not seem to be used by pedestrians. I find it very dangerous when riding the bike because it pushes me further into the middle of the road. It has also made the traffic worse, meaning more pollution in our high street.

All in all I think that our high street would be better off without it. A good alternative would be a bike lane.

Elizabeth B 4 months ago

Remove all barriers. The narrowing of the High Street is unnecessary and a waste of public money and puts cyclists at danger by leaving less room between them and other road users.

Cllr Nicholas Bennett 4 months ago

I do not see any point in your proposals. The cordening off outside Sainsbury's has never made sense to me as not enough footfall, and cyclists have to come out into the road. The other one outside Cafe Talis is a nightmare, as road narrows, lorries and buses are vying to get across Swan junction, or turn round. Cyclists pushing their bikes on foot, and pavement outside The Swan very narrow anyway.
During the queuing period the one outside Barclays Bank made sense in a way but now this is no longer happening, there is no need for that one either.
Please take them all way. Since WW High Street has become a Red Route, traffic is a nightmare at the best of times.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

My feedback would be that there is no need for pavement widening outside Sainsbury's as there never seems to be a queue. If Sainsbury's removed the signs and barriers they put on the pavement there would be more space!
There is often a queue outside Barclays and a wider pavement there would be helpful, but only if the queues will continue long term. There never used to be queues, so if that calms down there doesn't seem to be any need for pavement widening.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

Thank you for consulting the people of West Wickham. I hope you get a helpful response and will act on the views put forward.
The blue barriers have been a great help in places where the pavements are narrow, also where banks, pharmacies and shops have obliged customers to queue outside sometimes waiting up to half an hour for admittance. However I would hope very much that this situation will not last indefinitely, so would not ask for pavement to be permanently widened as he traffic flow on the road would be restricted which would not be helpful to motorists, buses, vans and lorries, particularly at the beginning and end of the working day when movement is extremely sluggish. Creating high levels of harmful exhaust, there is no point in solving one problem by creating another. As there are four large council car parks in Wickham plus those at M and S and Lidl stores it should be possible to do away with the intermittent parking bays which effectively reduce the traffic to single lane where there could be two lanes in both directions.(Blue badge holders excepted)
Concerning pedestrians and pavement capacity, the best thing of all would be to take away every bollard and item of clutter except refuse bins and possibly cycle lock up points. However the cyclists when on the move should be made to abide by the law by not using the foot paths. The only remaining hardware shop no 84 should be allowed to keep some stock outside the store as there isn’t simply room inside to display it while letting customers in. However, there is no place for the new butcher at Larder No 86 to put his gimmicky bicycle with carrier across the pavement. It isn’t needed .The two rows of bollards painted shocking pink to match the shop front of the ice cream parlour divide the pavement into three strips with right by a bus stop and should never have been allowed in the first place. I doubt that any planning permission was applied for or granted. Advertising boards showing menus and events outside restaurants and pubs should also be kept clear of the pavement. At present they oblige one to walk around them making it impossible to pass people coming in the opposite direction without stepping off the footpath. I don’t know if the public phone box actually works but never see anyone using it. Sweeping away piece of unnecessary clutter would be the easiest and cheapest way to make a welcome difference to the appearance as well as convenience of the whole town.
I hope due respect will be given to the views f those who reply to your letter. So often councils have a duty to consult the public but then go on to do what they had decided regardless.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

Thank you for providing the opportunity to comment on the potential for widening the footways in High Street, West Wickham.
My thoughts are that it makes little sense to have an A Road (A232) running through Shirley Shopping Centre in Wickham Road and West Wickham High Street when there is a good alternative route.
Prior to spending more money perhaps you should step back and consider and consult on the possibility of rerouting the A232 from the Trinity Roundabout at the end of the Shirly shops in Wickham Road into Upper Shirley Road, Shirley Hills Road, Gravel Hill, Kent Gateway, Addington Village Road, Addington Road and re-join the original route at the bottom of Glebe Way, West Wickham.

While this would not stop the use of the original route it should reduce some of the heavy lorries that can create problems through the shopping areas. It is appreciated that both routes can become very congested at certain times.

It would be useful to hear the various views. It would of course involve highways currently the responsibility of both Bromley and Croydon Councils.

In any event you should definitely consider a 20 MPH limit thorough West Wickham High Street and Shirley Shopping Centre.
Hope this is of assistance

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

I am a resident in West Wickham and feel that the pavement widening has had a positive effect on slowing some of the traffic in the high street.
I would like it to stay and the pavement should be properly widened in the places that are currently temporary. This would have a calming effect on the traffic.
I know you have been contacted by the West Wickham Residents’ Association (of which I am a member), and that they oppose the widening becoming permanent. However the individual who contacted you does not speak for the residents – they are stating their individual opinion.
The members of the Residents’ Association have not been consulted and some residents that I have spoken with would like the widening to become permanent.
I am also in favour of all residential roads becoming 20mph (as the police have told me they should be), as 20mph is safer where there is no clear 2-way passing in roads that have parked cars.
The Residents’ Association have also spoken on behalf of the residents on this matter, without any consultation with the membership.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

Received your flyer yesterday - Instant rage
1- Do not review pavement widening on West Wickham High Street it is plenty wide enough already. Those who play with their mobile phones and pay scant attention to what they are doing and go under a bus – tough
2- Do you really want to know what to do with your blue barriers – get rid. Also your tarmac wedgies outside Barclays Bank.
3- Bollards outside Sainsbury's reducing the pavement area especially for oldies using electric vehicles – get rid.

I see that you at TfL have been to the Ken Livingstone school of geography whereby anything between lands end and John – O – Groats is in SARF London it isn’t. Look at my address nowhere does the word London appear. I live in Kent not London.
So stop meddling.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

Leave the pavements as they are, remove the plastic barriers & don't touch the pavements. They don't need anything doing to them, its not really busy with people coming & going to warrant bigger pavements.
If they are where is the traffic going to go? Its already busy with traffic being the A232 with buses & lorries coming & going taking up road space will cause more traffic throughout especially at school times & rush hour which will lead to more pollution if traffic is at a standstill more! What a silly plan to even consider this idea!

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

I think the bigger problem in West Wickham as both a driver and pedestrian is the traffic though the High Street.
I believe the widening of the pavement is a poor idea as it only adds to the traffic problem.
Please do not widen the pavement.

Aussie33 4 months ago

1 Pavement widening. No need for scheme to remain or become permanent.
The need for social distancing should come to an end.
The widening near Swan pub not used.
Queues for banks etc should stop when restriction lifted.
Majority of the over 50s and vulnerable residents fully vaccinated. No longer need for social distancing.
The traffic would be adversely affected causing more traffic chaos.
2 Traffic Signalling
It is dangerous as most motorists don’t understand how to follow roadsigns indicating nose to tail junction turning.
The light sequencing is too long in some directions during the day causing traffic to back up.
The junction from S. Eden Park Road traffic lights with Station Road, there are now two lanes for straight on instead one for only turning right into Ravenscroft Crescent and one for straight on to Station Road.
This is confusing and dangerous. Encouraging traffic to race lanes and cut in.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

I would like to see a permanent introduction for a wider foot path in the High Street, a reduction to 20mph during busy times (e.g 0800-1800hrs) and increased number of trees. This will help keep pedestrians safer because the shops are closed outside of busy times. There has been a third tragic road accident where a car mounted the pavement and went into a coffee shop so I would like to also see some permanent bollards (as well as trees). The trees will help as a barrier, absorb pollution as well as look attractive.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 4 months ago

I believe that the current barriers are a bit of a curse, especially when they get blown over. West Wickham High Street is a very busy thoroughfare from a traffic point of view and any widening of the pavement will only exacerbate this situation whilst the A232 is routed along it. Once we return to some sort of 'normality' the pinch points, such as outside Barclay's and the bus stops should sort themselves out. Any pavement widening with the current volumes of traffic would, in my opinion, be madness.

Squareman 5 months ago

Yes, keep the pavement widening!

Cheetah 5 months ago

Thank you so much for engaging local people on this matter! Personally, I would like to amend the scheme by replacing the blue barriers with raised pavement, so the whole pedestrian area is one level, which will make it easier for wheelchairs, buggies etc. If possible, I think the introduction of street trees or other greenery, or benches, would also improve the high street for shoppers. But more than anything else, what I would really like to see is a formal consultation of local residents to take their preferences into consideration. I think this is important because it is democratic and because if TfL doesn't do this, it is quite likely that any amendments TfL makes will be criticised by some people as 'undemocratically imposed on West Wickham by TfL' - just because that's the kind of argument made by some people who are opposed to any measures that make streets safer for people travelling on foot or bicycle.

Brendan Donegan 5 months ago

Please do widen the pavement permanently in West Wickham. Creating wider paved walkways would enhance the experience for those on foot and allow for a more permanent observance of social distancing on the high street. Widening would make passing easier with buggies and mobility aids on a permanent basis, making it a more inclusive, safer and more desirable place to transition through on foot. Ideally areas of extremely narrow pavement will be subject to new considerations of widening as there are a couple of ‘extreme’ pinch points where only single file transition is currently possible.

West Wickham Mum 5 months ago

I'm responding by email as the guestbook on your webpage seems to be attracting one particular individual who seems to feel the need to shout down any other comments. I live in Park Langley, but am often in West Wickham so while not a "resident" it is still very much my patch and I would like my views considered.

I am in favour of making the pavement widening a permanent feature. It is critical to
(a) rebuild communities and
(b) deal with the climate crisis
that we stop treating roads as solely spaces where car drivers must be inconvenienced least. Instead we have to design these spaces to suit all users, and in that way we will preserve a bustling high street far better.

So please do make the widening a permanent feature.

And while we're at it, some other ideas:
- let's have more planters too, with whatever RHS or other authoritative bodies suggest are the best plants for capturing (and lowering levels of) pollutants.
- let's think cyclists at all junctions too. For example, the Swan traffic lights have advance stop lanes coming from the swimming baths and from Glebe Way - why not the other two approaches?
- make the busier parts of the road (say from Lidl on Glebe Way to the Catholic Church) a 20mph zone
Thanks for the opportunity to comment, I hope the above is useful.

Umaar Tariq (TfL Have your say team) 5 months ago

The plastic barriers should be removed but I would like to see the pavements permanently widened where they are particularly narrow (done properly not using plastic bollards) to make the high street more attractive, welcoming and safer for pedestrians, which will in turn benefit the local businesses. The road should also be changed to a 20 mph speed limit in line with the mayor's vision zero and healthy streets approach as the dominance of motor vehicles in this area urgently needs to be reduced. A few loading bays and disabled parking spots should also be retained along the road for those who need them. Please don't just use this as an opportunity to remove any parking and create a faster flow of traffic though. The very last thing we need is a red route with no parking bays and a 30 mph speed limit.

thewheelsonthebus 5 months ago